A sports facility will be established in Kericho County in honour of the first Kenyan Olympic medalist in the 1964 Tokyo race the late Wilson Kiprugut Chumo who was laid to rest on Saturday at his home in Kipchebor ward in Ainamoi Constituency, Kericho County.
Speaking during the funeral service held at Kipsigis Girls High School, the Youth Affairs, Sports and Arts Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba said that the national government is willing and ready to put up a world-class sports stadium that will be named the Wilson Kiprugut Chumo Memorial Stadium.
The CS assured of the government’s commitment to honor and take better care of both the active and retired sports persons who brand Kenya better than anyone or anything else by initiating a proper welfare program for the retired sports men and women for them to lead a dignified life.
He however urged the athletes to shun from doping and continue pursuing their sporting goals with a spirit of integrity and excellence.
“I warn unscrupulous managers, coaches, and doctors to stop taking advantage of our athletes to dope. We want our young athletes to maintain the good reputation and the good heritage of our legendary sports men and women like the late Kiprugut who maintained integrity in Athletics by shunning doping practices,” stressed Namwamba.
Mr. Namwamba eulogized Mr. Kiprugut as a fine hero who made Kenya proud at the global arena who must be honoured posthumously.
“Wilson, who rests at the age of 84, is without a doubt Kenya’s Athletics “John the Baptist”, having phenomenally blazed the trail by winning Kenya’s first ever medal, at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics right in the heat of our independence,” said Mr. Namwamba
Kericho County Governor Dr. Eric Mutai mourned the fallen hero saying he will be remembered for his exemplary performance at the world stage that brought our country honour in the sixties.
“The Kericho County Government is also committed to put up several initiatives in honour of the late Kiprugut Chumo by renovating all sporting facilities,” said Dr. Mutai.
Hundreds of mourners attended the funeral including area leaders Ainamoi MP Benjamin Langat, Kericho Woman Representative Beatrice Kemei, Kipchebor MCA Erick Bett, Legendary athlete Kipchoge Keino, and famous athlete David Rudisha.
Kenyan middle-distance legend, the late Mr. Wilson Kiprugut Chumo passed on at his Kericho home on Tuesday 1st November 2022 after a long illness.
By Kibe Mburu